I have recently become a junky for Heroes. I say recently because I’m a year late to the party.
After rushing to finish the first season in only two weeks via Netflix, I geared up for the second season only to discover it had already started. Nice timing, NBC.
Fortunately, NBC has one of the best online content sources on the Web: NBC Video Rewind.
There, I have caught up with what is going on in the second season. I have been pleasantly surprised with the image and sound quality coming through my home network (DSL and Aiport Extreme) to the point that I have decided not to watch any future episodes on TV. I just wait until Monday night’s episode is uploaded on Tuesday (which means I have a new episode to watch tonight).
The only thing that irritates me about this service is the advertising model. NBC is still working out the kinks, but as far as I can tell they have chosen to keep the same format: ten minutes of content followed by a commercial break. Rinse. Repeat.
The breaks are only one spot long, and from what I can tell they are devoted wholely to one company that buys all the blocks for a given episode. That’s not irritating, but what the companies choose to do with their time is. It’s the same spot they air on television, broadcast over and over and over and over and over…
This is a slap in the face of the medium in which the advertising sits. This is not TV, don’t run a TV spot.
The only exception is for Heroes episode 205 (2nd season, 5th episode). This one was snagged by Nissan to advertise their new Rogue crossover (also seen extensively throughout the second season of Heroes).
What Nissan chose to do was make spots specifically for this format. They aren’t remakes of their TV work or their website; rather, they are interactive snippets that let you scroll over the ads with your mouse to activate information about the car. You can even click on it to learn more (without interrupting Heroes). The interactive component quickly exits the screen after 30 seconds, and on with the show:
It also ties in nicely with the microsite built out for the car.
At this site, you can learn more about the car, play a few games, and customize your own Rogue (to ultimately purchase):
Try to get the ball past the cabbie in Rogue Baller
Avoid potholes while driving through a digital city in Maze Master.
Inform. Entertain. Engage.
Check. Check. Check.
Kudos to Nissan. You are the first brand (I know of) to figure out iTV.